In the NHL, Nicklas Backstrom is most known as the Washington Capitals center who distributes the puck to Alexander Ovechkin, normally his linemate. In the Olympics, Backstrom and Ovechkin get split up, with Backstrom slotting in as one of the Swedish hockey team's top centers. Backstrom, age 26, has already represented Sweden at the 2010 Olympics, when he had a strong six-point (1 goal, 5 assists) in four games for a team that won all of its round-robin games before being defeated in its first medal-round game.
- Finished fourth in NHL scoring with 101 points in 2009-10.
- Won the Swedish Viking Award as the top Swedish hockey player in North America in 2009.
- Won a gold medal with Sweden at the 2006 World Championships.
- Was drafted fourth overall in the NHL Draft by the Washington Capitals, his current NHL team, in 2006.
- Represented Sweden in the 2006 and 2007 World Junior Championships.
Things to know:
1. Is no relation to Finnish goalie Niklas Backstrom of the Minnesota Wild, who spells his first name without a "c".
2. His father, Anders, is a retired professional hockey player and his mother, Catrin, was a professional handball player.
3. His hometown, Gävle, is located in eastern Sweden on the Baltic Sea. It is known for a unique Christmastime custom where a giant goat made of straw, slightly resembling a Trojan Horse, is erected in the town square. The unique part of the custom is that for decades, the goat gets (illegally) burnt to the ground at some point before Christmas during December.